The Basics of a Roof Replacement

Replacing a home’s roof will likely be one of the largest and most expensive home remodeling projects you will encounter. This is a job best suited for a local roofing contractor. But, before you make the first call for prices, it’s helpful to understand the basics of a roof replacement. This basic knowledge will be invaluable when it comes time to make your final decision on a contractor.

Different kinds of material

Here in the Northeast there are basically 2 common types of roofing material used today. All vary in pricing, and a lot depends on personal preference when it comes to look. 

  1. Asphalt shingles

Asphalt shingles are the most common option as well as the most inexpensive. There are two styles of asphalt shingles today and they come in a wide variety of colors: 

  • 3-tab Shingles – These are the most basic style of shingle available. These are manufactured by the factory as a single row, about 3 feet long, and separated into 3 tabs (as the name alludes to).   
  • Architectural Shingles – These have become a popular choice. These shingles are manufactured in such a way that they give a 3D effect on the roof. Architectural shingles are more expensive than 3-tab shingles. 
  1. Metal

Metal roofs are somewhat rare but have become more popular in recent years. Metal roofs, when installed correctly, offer a number of advantages.

  • Durability – When installed properly, metal roofing can last up to 50 years or more. They are much more efficient at sealing out water, standing up to high winds, and shedding snow than the average asphalt roof. Metal roofs are also resistant to fire, mildew, and insect infiltration. 
  • Lower Energy Bills – Most modern metal roofs come with Energy Star finishes that are certified to reflect sunlight. This feature will help keep your home cooler than other materials. 

Weight concerns

Before finalizing your roofing plan, one must consider weight. Installing new roofing over existing asphalt shingles is a common practice, but this can also become too heavy for the underlying framing. This is something to be particularly aware of in older homes. The maximum amount of layers of asphalt shingles commonly installed is two.


Another point to consider is what the surface below your new shingles looks like. When installing over a previous layer, keep in mind that any irregularities will be repeated. If you are considering replacing an old roof, there’s a very good chance that it will have bumps and depressions you will want to eliminate. 

The best course of action to avoid telegraphing is to remove the previous layer of shingles. This also gives you a good opportunity to check the integrity of the roofing deck under the shingles.

When it comes to choosing your next roofing contractor, choose local. Choose Bealing, Roofing & Exteriors, Inc., where we treat every job like our own.